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Breathing Life into Your Routine: The Benefits of Outdoor Exercise – Week 22 in #your2024story

In today’s fast-paced world, taking care of one’s health has become more important than ever before.
One effective and enjoyable way to do this is through outdoor exercise, also known as ‘green
exercise’. This practice combines two different health-boosting activities: moving your body and
getting outdoors. The results are exceptional and far-reaching, impacting both physical and mental
health. Whether you’re looking to enhance your mood, save money, or escape the confines of indoor
workout spaces, the great outdoors offer a refreshing alternative. We want to delve deeper
into the holistic benefits of outdoor exercise and provide some practical strategies for
incorporating it into your life.

THE BENEFITS OF OUTDOOR EXERCISE

Improved Mental Well-being:

One of the most significant benefits of outdoor exercise is its
positive impact on mental health. It has been linked to improved mental well-being and reduced
stress. According to a study published in the Journal of Environmental Psychology, just 20 minutes
of outdoor exercise can make you feel happier. This is a testament to the power of nature in
alleviating mental stress and promoting a sense of calm and happiness.

Vitamin D Boost:

Outdoor exercise is also a great way to get your dose of vitamin D, fondly
referred to as the “sunshine vitamin”. This essential nutrient is crucial for bone health and mental
well-being. It’s produced by the body in response to sunlight, making outdoor workouts an excellent
way to soak up some much-needed vitamin D.

Varied Workouts:

The outdoors is a natural playground, offering endless opportunities for varied
workouts. You can easily switch between jogging, cycling, or doing bodyweight exercises. The varied
terrain provides additional challenges that can help build strength and endurance.

EFFECTIVE STRATEGIES FOR INCORPORATING OUTDOOR EXERCISE

Incorporating outdoor exercise into your daily routine might seem challenging, but it doesn’t have to
be. Here are some strategies that can help you make outdoor workouts a regular part of your life.

Start Small:

If you’re new to exercising outdoors, start small. Don’t overwhelm yourself with lofty
goals. Instead, try taking a 10-minute walk during your lunch break or after dinner. As your fitness
level improves, gradually increase your time and intensity.

Make it a Group Activity:

Exercising with friends or family can make the experience more
enjoyable and motivating. The camaraderie can help you stay committed to your workout routine.
Consider joining an outdoor workout class or club in your community. This can also be a great way
to meet new people and build a supportive network.

Use What’s Around You:

Outdoor workouts don’t require fancy equipment or a gym membership.
Use what’s around you. Parks, for instance, have plenty of space for running and bodyweight
exercises like push-ups and squats. Even your backyard can become your personal gym.

Remember, the goal is to find an outdoor activity that you enjoy and will stick with. Whether that’s
hiking, running, cycling, or something else, the most important thing is that you get moving. The
beauty of outdoor exercise is its versatility and accessibility. So get started, enjoy the fresh air and
reap the holistic benefits that outdoor exercise has to offer.

Download a copy of this weeks journal prompts below:

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